An investment project in Pikri Nero, which includes plans for the development of a ‘premium tourism resort’, alongside two other projects in Koumbara and Papa-Loukas, has been designated as “strategic” by the Interministerial Committee for Strategic Investments (D.E.S.E.).
Save Ios Association objects to this proposed investment in Pikri Nero as it fails to respect the island’s spatial and social setting, promote sustainable development nor benefit all stakeholders. It undermines rational spatial planning by creating damaging and irreversible outcomes. It will defame and degrade the tourism product that local enterprises in Ios currently offer. It will privatise Ios’ precious natural resources and exclude local citizens and visitors from using them.
In addition to the above, the area’s wildlife is one vulnerable aspect of the environment. According to the data from Elliniki Ornithologiki Etaireia the islands of Ios, Sikinos and Folegandros have been designated as an ‘Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas’ (IBAs). They are specifically important areas for breeding seabirds and predators. There is a wildlife refuge In Ios, protected by law (Government Gazette 600 / Β / 30-4-1976), in the area of highlighted below, which covers 37,000 acres. The area has five small island wetlands, with the presence of mammals, birds, amphibians and fish. In addition, the marine ecosystem has a diversity of fauna and flora. The mega-hotel development planned for Pikri Nero, which is within this area, would seriously endanger the wildlife here.
In summary, such a development would dangerously pressurise the bearing capacity of the island, which still lacks a spatial plan. These were the two deciding factors in the State Council’s recent decision to block developments in Koumbara. In addition, just like the planned investment in Koumbara, a tourism village in Pikri Nero would also over-power the strength of the island’s sensitive ecosystem.
On 22 February 2022, the Greek government launched a public consultation on the proposed investment project at Pikri Nero. We entered a submission in objection, which can be accessed here. This ”strategic” investment will now go to the State Council for approval in the coming months. Save Ios Association is determined to stop them. Through our legal team, we will continue our objection. To help #SavePikriNero, we have started a petition https://save-ios.gr/en/save-pikri-nero/. Such a petition should contain signatures of those that are ‘directly impacted’ by developments on the island. If you are a resident in Ios or own a property on the island and support our campaign, please sign the form (your details will be used only as part of a collective document to be presented to the State Council).